|MANCHESTER, N.J. – The Attorney General’s Shooting Response Team is conducting an investigation into the circumstances surrounding a fatal shooting that occurred shortly before 4 a.m. this morning in Manchester Township in which a man was fatally shot by the Ocean County Regional SWAT Team after he allegedly threatened officers with a knife as they attempted to arrest him.
According to the preliminary investigation, officers of the Manchester Township Police Department went to the mobile home at 1881 Route 37 West where the decedent, Michael Laniado, 27, was living with his girlfriend, Shyna Palmieri, 25, at about 12 midnight to execute an arrest warrant for Palmieri. When the officers attempted to execute the warrant, Laniado and Palmieri barricaded themselves inside the mobile home, after which the officers heard loud sounds of objects being thrown and smashed, as well as screaming. The occupants began throwing large objects, including small appliances and a spear, out of the home at the officers, causing them to retreat and call in the Ocean County Regional SWAT Team. After the SWAT team arrived, a hostage negotiator attempted to convince the couple to surrender peacefully, but was unsuccessful. Officers inserted a robot with a cell phone into the mobile home as part of the efforts to communicate, and they allegedly heard Laniado threatening to harm Palmieri.
Fearing for Palmieri’s safety, officers fired tear gas into the mobile home. That caused Laniado to exit the mobile home while allegedly holding Palmieri at knifepoint. Laniado allegedly made statements that he was going to kill her. Eventually, he tossed the knife he was wielding back over his shoulder as if to surrender. However, when officers advanced to arrest him, he allegedly pulled another knife out of his clothing. Officers then fired several non-lethal dummy or bean bag rounds that hit Laniado but did not have any effect on him. As Laniado continued to move toward the officers with the knife, at least one officer fired multiple rounds of lethal ammunition at Laniado, hitting him multiple times. Laniado was taken by EMS to Community Medical Center in Toms River, where he was pronounced dead. Palmieri was taken into custody. No officers were injured. Both knives were recovered at the scene. The second knife wielded by Laniado and recovered beside him after the shooting is a large karambit knife, a martial knife with a curved blade.
The incident remains under investigation by the Attorney General’s Shooting Response Team. Under Attorney General Directives, the Shooting Response Team, made up of deputy attorneys general, detectives of the Division of Criminal Justice, and detectives of the State Police Major Crime Unit, are dispatched to the scene to handle investigations of shootings involving state troopers or officers employed by county prosecutors as detectives/investigators or members of county SWAT teams and task forces. The Attorney General Directives governing investigations of police-involved shootings are located at the following links: